Chelsea have completed the signing of Real Madrid and Croatian international midfielder Mateo Kovacic on a permanent deal according to The Blues’ official website.

The 25-year-old Linz-born midfielder impressed during a season-long loan spell at The Bridge in 2018/2019 in which he made 51 appearances for The Blues in all competitions.

It has now been confirmed that Chelsea have taken up an option to make the arrangement a permanent one and Kovacic has signed a five-year contract at Stamford Bridge. It is understood that The Blues have paid around £40 million for the player’s services and have been permitted to sign Kovacic despite being under a two-window transfer ban with the midfielder already registered with Chelsea.

Kovacic started his career in his homeland with Dinamo Zagreb where he went on to make 73 first team appearances in which he scored eight goals. In January 2013, the midfielder joined Italian club Inter Milan where he spent two-and-a-half years. The player then moved to Real Madrid where he went on to win La Liga as well as an astonishing three UEFA Champions League titles.

The player began to fall out of favour at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium and he joined Chelsea on a season-long loan deal last August. Kovacic lifted the UEFA Europa League with The Blues in Baku in May.